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6/15/04 at New York Liberty

Final score: Storm 86 – Liberty 62 (W) (6-2)

Submitted by | StormFan7

All the players scored which made me really happy. I think it's great when Chelle or Greco (players that don't get much time) score and LJ and Sue are up whipping their towels. Most teams don't have players that do that and I think it shows what great players we have.  
Ann Wauters played really good D on Lauren all night. You could see Lauren getting really frustrated.  
There was lots of Sue fans there and one had a sign that said "Go Sue, Long Isaland Loves You". She was like 7 or 8  and her mom was holding the sign. I don't know what part of the "Isaland" you are from but where I'm from it's "Island".  
I HEART the Liberty intro. I know I said the same thing about the Mercury one but this one is better. It has a WNBA ball bouncing around the streets of NYC and around MSG and then onto the court. I guess you have to be there to really appreciate how cool it is.

Got to NYC and went to the WNBA Store. What a disappointment! This time it wasn't the shrinking size of the WNBA section, which shockingly is the same size it was my last visit, it was what they've done with the section. They've stored all NBA sale merchandise on racks in front of the WNBA merchandise and cordoned off the area with ropes so there is no way of getting to the WNBA stuff.  If you try to walk into the area yourself, you are quickly told to get out and they will get something if you want it...not that you may know what you want because you can't look at what's there.  Pathetic.


Beginning of the first half I was nervous because they were playing really good D and we would get only one chance offensively. Then Tari Phillips started missing free throws. I know she missed 6 in the game but the four she missed on consecutive trips down really put us back in the game. Sorry NY fans for this but who the hell is Tari? Katie Smith, Lisa Leslie, Sheryl Swoopes I can understand them getting calls because they are "superstars" but Tari isn't and it's about time she stops getting them. She missed the 4 free throws and we got back in the game and left NY to eat our dust. For a long time the foul count was Storm 6 Liberty 2. I was waiting for the refs to even them and sure enough they did.  
The second half was awesome. We couldn't miss or at least that's what it looked like. Everyone was scoring and having a good time. LJ hardly played in the second half but she was very animated on the bench when another player would score.  
Richie Tomatohead really needs to be fired. Elena Baranova should not have been on the bench 18 min when they are down. Care to explain why your best player was subbed out so you can play Tari? Ann Wauters was playing good D on Lauren and he took her out too. I can see him losing his job before the season is over.  
Like Jayda said in her article, just about everyone left when Greco came in the game. I have never left a Storm game no matter how bad we were losing. What kind of message is that sending to your players?
The lady behind me and Shed was so annoying. She felt the need to talk during the whole first half and if that wasn't bad enough she couldn't get her facts right. Like she said "Sue Bird was the number one pick last year and LJ the year before, how does that happen?" (There was also another guy who questioned how Seattle managed to get Sue and Lauren in the same year of the draft.  Both Shed and I bit our tongue to stop from correcting him.)  This is her exchange with old lady next to her after Baranova got a loose ball foul:
Old lady: What!? She didn't even touch the ball.  
Annoying lady: It was an over the back call.
Old lady: You can't be called for a foul when you aren't touching the ball. Its f***ing bulls***. Stupid f***ing b****.  
The old lady stayed but the annoying lady left about 5 min into the second half because she didn't want to see the Liberty lose. Her son was pretty funny at the end of the game. When White got a board with about 30 seconds left he said "you haven't rebounded all game and now you are going to start.  Don't rebound, let them win by 30."  
They gave out rain hats before the game and by the end of the game the Red Cross was there for disaster relief.

Submitted by | Queenie

"So she was wearing a sweater, a denim vest, and this floor-sweeper dress that had to be three sizes too big for her.  It probably *was* Anne Donovan's miniskirt."
Unfortunately, that and the Cleveland-inspired punfest my mom and I had at halftime were the last good laughs I had.  There are butt-whuppings and there are butt-whuppings, and this was a full-fledged butt-whupping.  Simply put, Seattle kept their hands on the ball, and New York didn't- whether it was on rebounds, dribbles, or passes, Seattle had better control of the ball.
It started out so well.  We had a decent anthem from a young Aussie named Karen Jacobsen; she infused it with a lot more emotion than I'm used to, but there were odd vocal shifts in the middle.  We had the amusement value of Tully Bevilaqua and Simone Edwards looking for all the world like they were trying out for the Rockettes.  We had a hard-fought, well-played first half with the Liberty only down five.  But the momentum had already started to shift in that half.  It only got more and more lopsided in the second half.  Seattle got second shot after second shot after second shot.  I think the key play was near the end of the first half, when Lauren Jackson went to the line for two.  She hit the first, then Richie called a timeout to try to ice her.  She missed the second, perhaps intentionally, then swooped right in and got the putback.  That was killer.  There was a whole lot more of that in the second half for the Storm.
It had previously impressed me no end that Sue Bird, who plays a position that usually ends up with the worst-percentage shots, was leading the team in field goal percentage.  But now I understand why.  She knows exactly when to take the shot and when to pass and when to try and set something else up.  Perhaps LJ was right in saying that she's the best point guard in the league.  Speaking of which... the reigning MVP was unstoppable last night.  Elena and Ann both tried defending her, supposedly, though what they were doing didn't look much like defense.  She had a double-double in the first half- I'd say that's pretty impressive.  Betty Lennox was doing her good-Betty/bad-Betty streaky thing, and it was rather disturbing, though fortunately for the Liberty she spent most of the game as bad-Betty, otherwise it probably would have been a 40-point loss.  Sheri Sam kept getting left open, and she kept hitting shots.  (Then again, the Liberty defense kept leaving LJ open too, and that's like WTF?)  She also had a knack for getting the ball in a rebounding situation.  Kamila Vodichkova was quiet most of the night, except for the state of perpetual foul.  Tully Bevilaqua is as tenacious and fearless as advertised; I think it was the first play she was in- she was getting ready for KB to come up, then took one huge step and was planted in position just in time for the happily oblivious KB to plow her over like something out of a bad driving commercial.  Fortunately, she has perfected the art of falling without being too awkward.  Adia Barnes is as fierce a defender as ever, though I do believe that her brace is a couple of inches longer than Becky's; she also found some offense in that second half, making me feel really stupid after I'd spent most of the first half saying how she was known for her defense.  Janell Burse is one hell of a tough cookie on the inside.
Ugh.  Where do I begin with the Liberty?  The defense was nonexistent- no one scores 86 on a good Liberty defense, not even an All-Star team.  Players missed assignments.  Players lost rebounds.  Players stood around and looked stupid.  Tari looked totally out of place- I'm starting to get frustrated with the shape she's not in, and the hand is no longer an excuse.  Becky made a lot of bad decisions, especially in the second half when she thought she had to take over the game (you'd think after she got the stuffing knocked out of her once or twice, she'd get the drift that the paint is not a good place to be when you're 5'6" and the people around you are 6'4" and 6'5").  VJ was off every which way from Sunday- if she's not hurting, then I don't know a damn thing about basketball.  Elena had moments, including a couple of good defensive moments, but she still wasn't Supernova.  Ann was very good on offense, but questionable on defense.  Crystal I think was the only one who really brought it.  And Richie, of course, was bad to his old tricks of calling every single possession, taking out the hot hand, and taking his sweet time about making substitutions.  But at least he removed his head from his arse and put Bethany and Erin in, though it took him about three minutes too long.
The Liberty looked awful, and it wouldn't surprise me if some of the harmony had gone sour.  But the Storm have a knack for making teams look bad.  While the extent of the loss can be placed squarely on the pathetic defense and rebounding that showed up, the fact of the loss can be placed on the fact that the Storm are one hell of a good team.